EMERGING ARTISTS & WRITERS
Man is to man a god
or a tomb, in rolling earth—
and the way we moved. Some man
in habit found a book and the world
on its cusp, white sundial exhumed
from its black den. Some ghost let its tail
rasp over Man’s hand. Now he thinks
of Erasmus, and the night turns light
like we know. Dawn’s petal unfolds
like before. And a body, enclosed
in rationale. Behind the past,
an egg of pagan sun. Man copies lines
and burns what they had. Then,
there was only Athens, soft and naked
—in its birth.
Break only in case
of emergency: a lobster
inside its glass case.
It’s not what we’d expect
from the ocean, nor from the train
that swims through the night.
What flame could it quell
but fire, what burning
could it choke, what pyre
could it save? Think of tracks
in skin, its wheeling
red seams. Could it slow the bleed?
Anyone, this man, his slackened
breaths, they could ebb
away like the night,
murky, the night: the skin
of the earth turned
inside out. Life,
life, give my flaring
Night: dark, a very
Jessica Zhang is a high school senior from Boston. She reads for The Blueshift Journal and edits her school literary magazine. Her work appears in SOFTBLOW, The Tulane Review, Winter Tangerine Review Summer Anthology, and elsewhere.